IMPORTANT News on the WAL 2017 Season

November 3rd 2016

As the 2017 season approaches, we are excited to announce the following improvements to the series qualifications.  These improvements allow for greater accuracy of rankings and provide our athletes with a greater level of safety.
Effective Jan. 1, 2017:
In order to be eligible for the 2017 Championships, each competitor must compete at WAL events at least twice in their intended Championship weight class between Jan. 1 and the Championship event. This applies to both men and women.

The “Top 6” ranked in each class, after the third major event will qualify directly to Championships, and can not attend the Great 8 Major Event. 

This means:
A competitor who wants to pull in the 225-lb class at Championships, for example, must compete at that weight in at least two events between Jan. 1 and the Championships
This can be a Major and a local qualifier, two Majors or any combination of events. 

What if I’m a Top 6-ranked puller?
The rule still applies – all competitors must compete twice at their weight before Championships.

Remember: those ranked in the Top 6 on either arm after the first 3 majors CANNOT attend the Great 8 event; so everyone should plan their season accordingly. 

What if I am an Overall State Champion?
Since our current policy is that Overall State Champions advance straight to the Great 8 level, these Champions do not have to go to another event before the Great 8 as long as they won their State title in their intended weight class.  
If that is not the case, the competitor must still attend two events in their intended Championships class between Jan. 1 and the Championship event. Example: If a competitor wins an Overall State Championship at 223 lbs, but wants to compete at 2017 Finals at 195 lbs, he must still compete in 2 events in 2017, not just the Great 8.
What if I am an Overall State Champion AND ranked Top 6?
The above guidance applies: competitors must compete twice at their weight before finals.
Amateur Series & Progression
Amateur Definition
Anyone who did not place Top 2 in their weight class/arm at the 2016 Amateur Championships is eligible as an amateur in 2017. This means that if you placed Top 2 at the 2016 Amateur Championships on either arm, you can no longer compete in the Amateur class at the Major/Championship level.

Does that mean I can be an amateur on one arm and Pro on the other?
Only at the local level. Once you compete at a WAL Major or Championship event, you must compete as a Pro on both arms.

I have competed as a pro before. Can I drop back down?
Anyone who did not qualify for the 2016 Championships can drop back down. For clarity: If you placed Top 12 on either arm at the 2016 WAL Regionals, you are ineligible to compete as an amateur. 

How do Amateur’s progress in 2017?
To get to the Amateur Championships in 2017, you must:
Place Top 3 at a local WAL amateur Qualifier OR
Place Top 8 at a WAL major amateur event OR
Compete in any 3 WAL amateur events 

WAL continues to strive towards elevating our sport in all facets.   Best of luck to all competitors and we look forward to more great strides in 2017

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